NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Comcast's (CMCSA) debt-free acquisition of Time Warner Cable (TWC) means it will be a snowy February in the souls of Wall Street bankers. The biggest cable consolidation in a generation won't be a bonanza for fee-hungry bulge brackets. It could have been.
Time Warner Cable had two deals on the table: Selling itself to Comcast, a far healthier competitor and the biggest cable operator in the U.S, in an all-stock merger, or cutting a merger with Charter Communications (CHTR) in a heavily debt-financed $132 a share offer that would have given the company's shareholders $83 a share in cash.
The company and its CEO Rob Marcus went for stock over cash. That critical decision means tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions in underwriting fees for Wall Street dealers will be left on the table.
Charter had been in the market to raise over $20 billion in financing to push forward its takeover of Time Warner Cable. The firm was being advised by Goldman Sachs, LionTree Advisors and Guggenheim Partners, and had raised financing from Bank of America, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank. Those fees are off the table for now.
In lieu of Charter's participation in a Time Warner Cable takeover, JPMorgan, Paul J. Taubman and Barclays were financial advisors to Comcast, while Davis Polk & Wardwell and Willkie Farr & Gallagher acted as legal advisors.
Morgan Stanley, Allen & Company, Citigroup and Centerview Partners are financial advisors to Time Warner Cable, while Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom acted as legal advisors.